How to melt chocolate

How to melt chocolate

Many of our recipes call for melted chocolate and we get asked often the best method for doing so.  Below you can find the stovetop and Thermomix methods we use to melt the chocolate for our recipes:

Prepping your chocolate
Depending on what type of chocolate you are melting, you may need to prepare the chocolate for melting. If you are melting chocolate chips, chocolate candy coating (which is often treated with wax or paraffin), or candy coating chips or “candy melts”, part of the work is already done for you: the chocolate is ready to melt, since it is already divided into small, even-sized portions. However, if you are using dark chocolate from a block, you will require a little bit more preparation. Coarsely chopping the chocolate will ensure that it melts evenly, and faster than if it were in large, solid chunks.

Stove top method
While melting chocolate in the microwave or in a saucepan is possible, melting it in a bottom saucepan that holds hot water, plus a bowl that fits securely over the saucepan will deliver the best results. Place the chopped chocolate in the top bowl and allow to melt over indirect heat. Fill the saucepan with a small amount of water, so that it does not touch the bottom of the bowl when it is placed on top. This way, the boiling water will warm the bowl, but you want a buffer to keep it from getting too hot too fast and scorching the chocolate. Stir constantly over the heat until only a few small lumps remain. Turn off heat and use residual heat to melt completely.

Thermomix method
Separate your chocolate in two, one mound being 2/3 and the other being 1/3.
Heat 2/3 of the chocolate in bowl 4 mins/50°C/Speed 2.
Half way through the 4 minutes remove lid of TM bowl and scrape down any chocolate from sides or any that is on top of blades.
Next, add the remaining 1/3 of chocolate and stir for 1 min/speed 2 with no temperature selected which will bring the chocolate down to 37° which makes it then easier to work with. By adding more chocolate it introduces good crystals into the warm chocolate and it cools it down.

Additional things to consider
* Use a clean, dry spoon for mixing (metal or silicone work best as they are less prone to store moisture than a wooden spoon). Or, use a spoon-shaped rubber spatula.
* Do not remove the top pan/bowl from the saucepan whilst melting; (a) you could burn yourself and (b) steam that escapes ca make the chocolate lumpy
* Be sure to melt the chocolate completely. Turn off the heat when there are only a full small lumps remaining. The residual heat will melt the remaining lumps and mean avoiding burning the chocolate.
* Chocolate hates water. Even the smallest amount of water will cause the chocolate to seize and clump so be sure to have pan or TM bowl completely dry before melting.

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